Category Archives: Playbook

Double T – Double Trouble

This article was originally posted on Direct Snap Football. 

“Revolutionary Football” — 1953

By Herbert “Swede” Phillips

With the defense rapidly catching up with the T formation offense, some coaches are turning to the single wingback formation, substituting power and deception for speed and quickness. Others will seek variations of the T; such as, the spread T, or the T with two quarterbacks — the Double T. This last-named formation is the one with which I have experimented extensively and to which I turned when my regular brand of T proved to be too weak.

Long before the inimitable Frank Leahy stated that the Double T is the trickiest football formation now known, several coaches in this section were experimenting with this tricky yet powerful offense. Besides the author, several of these strategies are Paul Vespa (Herndon, Virginia High School), Ed Shockey (Dobbyns-Bennett High School, Kingsport, Tenn.), Vassa Cate (Waycross, Georgia, High School). W.J. kirksey (Jonesboro, Georgia, High School), Maxwell Ivey (Atlanta, Georgia, Murphy High School), and Tom Nugent (Now at FSU).

Since very little has been published about this formation, each of these coaches has arrived at his theories and devised plays more or less independent of all others. Before talking to any of the others or reading the little that has been written on this offense, I drew up a series of plays with two quarterbacks and conducted a spring practice using this offense only. The results were very satisfactory. In three scrimmages with other schools (then legal), we found most of our plays very effective. By typing the unsuccessful plays, checking with the boys, talking to other Double T men of my acquaintance, and re-reading the Vespa (Southern Coach and Athlete, Oct., ‘46) and Shockey (Southern Coach and Athlete, Nov., ‘47) articles, I was able to establish principles which have since served as a workable basis for a deceptive, powerful offense. Here they are:

I. Place all pressure upon one sector of the defense. My first idea was to run every play the same way to both sides at the same time as if it might be in duplicate. We even called them double dive, double quickie, double cross buck, double pass. It soon became apparent that the defense caught on to this much faster than they did to the others for it played each side separately. When I began to put all the pressure to one side, the offense ran much better. Continue reading Double T – Double Trouble

The Spinner S’Wing T Offense

This article was originally posted on Direct Snap Football. 

After 22 years as the Head Football Coach at Western Branch High School here in Chesapeake, VA, I retired after the 2006 season. We ran the Delaware Wing T offense for the last 19 years of my career and had great success with it. I even created a spread shotgun version of the Wing T that proved to be highly successful for us the last 6 years that I coached Varsity.

I took the 2007 season off but found myself missing working with the kids. The rest of the headaches were not something I missed but the daily interaction with the players made me hungry to get back into coaching. A friend of mine, who was also a former coach, is the Principal at our local middle school. He offered me the opportunity to get back into coaching at that level. My pastor calls it: “Football Lite… less filling!” I get all the fun of working with teenagers with a minimum of the stress and aggravation that comes with coaching at the high school level.

Upon being hired, I decided that this was going to be “fun” so we were going to run a “fun” offense. After consulting several Single Wing coaches and web sites (especially this one, Direct Snap), I came up with a concept where I combined the plays and blocking rules of Delaware Wing T football with the principles of the Single Wing attack. Thus, the moniker Spinner S(ingle)’ Wing T offense.

I would like to share some of the basics that we used and if you are interested, contact me via email and we can talk more.


We ran an unbalanced line (with the unbalanced to the right only) with a wide receiver to that side. Our splits were 6 inches, which meant basically foot to foot! The SE’s width was anywhere from 5 yards from the “Power Tackle” to 15 yards wide.  Our TE aligned to the weak side and was an eligible receiver. Continue reading The Spinner S’Wing T Offense

Triple Wing

This article was originally posted on Direct Snap Football.

12 Feb 1966

Dear Bill:

Am very sorry that I have not gotten some material to you on the triple wing back as I promised. We have been getting this office transferred to Bill Murray at Duke and I haven’t had a chance to go into the archives and dig out the materials before going on an extended foreign trip in a few weeks.

The best I can do now is to give you a short resume and development of it and how it evolved. Also the formation and the variations that I used. It never had a good test. We hit a peak with it in 1932 — an 8-1 season — after defeating Princeton 3 years in a row on their own field with it.

I will jot down some illustrations on the enclosed pages.

Sincerely Yours,
D.O. McLaughry

P.S. The enclosed will give you a rough idea but when I get back I will dig out the orderly material that I know is somewhere.

The idea grew out of the close double wing, we were using it with a balanced line but it would be nearly the same from the unbalanced line. The first play used with a third wing back was the final game in 1928 vs. Colgate. I took the inside blocking back and set him outside the def. left end to block him in on a double reverse that finished up around him. It went from the 16 yd line for a touch down, the first time it was used.


Continue reading Triple Wing

Weak Side Attack in the Unbalanced Single Wing

This article was originally posted on Direct Snap Football.

Strengthening Your Weak Side Attack From the Unbalanced Line Single Wing

Defensive coaches are very quick to counter the unbalanced Single Wing formation by stepping down the DLs and LBs to take away the power advantage of the offense’s strong side. Unless the offense can out-athlete the defense, our reasons for attacking with an unbalanced formation have been somewhat diminished. To counter, the offense must have an effective weak side attack. Gaining positive yardage weak side on a consistent basis will result in further adjustments from the defense. In turn, the strong side game benefits.

First off, the plays about to be discussed are in no way ‘my creation’. I owe all of my Single Wing knowledge to reading Ken Kueffel, speaking with and reading the information provided by John Aldrich, as well as a lot of information shared by John Ward and others. While there is nothing mentioned in the this article which is earth shattering, I hope it assists you in improving your offensive attack.

The play-calling terminology is as follows: The Quarterback (FB in traditional terms) is the ‘1′ back, the Tailback is the ‘2′ back, the Wingback is the ‘3′ back, and the Fullback (Blocking Back in traditional terms) is the ‘4′ back. Our hole numbering system is Even Right/Odd Left. The first number of the call tells the Center where to snap the ball, the second number is the Back running the ball, and the third number is the hole for the play.

For simplicity, all of the plays are diagrammed as having the defense ’step down’ its players out of a 52 defensive package. Continue reading Weak Side Attack in the Unbalanced Single Wing

Integral Bunch Pass Route Packages

This article was originally posted on Direct Snap Football.

The following materials are intended to supplement the presentation I gave at the 2007 Single Wing Conclave in Wilkes-Barre, PA, although I believe they also stand on their own in discussing the Y Stick/Turn and Bunch Mesh/Under route packages. While I diagram them from unbalanced line single wing formation, these packages are applicable to any Bunched formation where three receivers are in close proximity to each other at the snap (i.e., within 5 yards of each other).

The first pass route package, which is known as Y Stick or Turn, is essentially a ball-control package, albeit with a deep shot built in. It is among the highest-percentage route packages I know of, and will deliver 7-9 yard gains with low risk on a very regular basis…and that is if your opponents are playing good pass defense. While it is designed to attack the underneath coverage in zone defenses, it can also be useful against man coverage.

The other package, Bunch Mesh/Under, is the latest version of the Bunch Mesh route package from the fertile mind of Coach Andrew Coverdale. He now prefers it to the original Mesh package he has been teaching since the mid-90’s. It is easier to install and to read, and provides good answers to both man and zone coverage.

I have had success with both of these pass route packages down to the age of 8, and they are both staples in modern passing attacks at every level up to and including the NFL. I’ll be happy to answer questions about either or both, and about the pass protection schemes I discuss — e-mail me at seayee at hotmail dot com.

Y Stick/Turn


Continue reading Integral Bunch Pass Route Packages